FLORENCE---The Hugh K. Leatherman Chair in Public Service has been fully funded at Francis Marion University in honor of Florence’s long-time state senator.
Established in 2002, with a $25,000 lead gift by Progress Energy Foundation to the FMU’s Campaign for Excellence, the $100,000 chair is now funded thanks to a final gift from Roche Carolina.
The endowed faculty chair in public service was created to recognize the distinguished career of Sen. Leatherman by honoring a senior faculty member who is extensively involved in community service. The chair will rotate to a different individual and includes a reduction in teaching load and a stipend.
Long-time faculty member Charlene Wages, a professor of psychology, has been named the first recipient of the Leatherman Chair for an initial five-year term.
“The university is most grateful for financial support from corporate citizens like Roche Carolina and Progress Energy,” said FMU President Fred Carter. “I am especially thankful that our state’s business community has seen fit to honor Sen. Leatherman through an endowed chair. The senator is one of this community’s biggest advocates, not only in the legislature, but through many other activities. He also has been one of the university’s major supporters over the years, and we are pleased to recognize his many contributions in this way.”
“I’m equally pleased that Charlene Wages is the first recipient of this chair,” said Carter. “She’s an ideal role model for the faculty and is heavily involved in the community at large. She will work extensively on women’s issues while holding this chair.”
“As supporters of education, my wife Jean and I are very pleased and humbled by these generous benefactors to Francis Marion University,” said Leatherman. “We are honored over the establishment of this new chair in public service, and we know that this chair will benefit thousands of our citizens and help to educate our children.”
Sen. Leatherman entered public service in 1967 when he was elected to the Quinby Town Council, later serving as mayor pro tempore. He was elected to the S.C. Senate in 1981 and today is chairman of the Senate Finance Committee and a member of the Budget and Control Board.
Born in Lincoln County, N.C., he earned a B.A. degree in civil engineering from N.C. State University. In 1955, he helped found Florence Concrete Products. Today, he is managing partner of WyBoo Investments.
A native of Atlanta, Ga., Wages also has taught at Georgia State University, Georgia Institute of Technology, Morris Brown College and Spelman College. She earned a bachelor’s degree at the University of Georgia and master’s and doctoral degrees at Georgia State.
Active in faculty governance since her arrival at FMU, Wages was elected chair of the faculty in 2000 and has been re-elected each year since. She stepped down from that post June 30. She was presented with the shared governance award in 2001 by FMU’s chapter of the American Association of University Professors. That same year, she also received the FMU Faculty Service Award.
A charter member of FMU’s Chapter of AAUP, she is serving a three-year term on that organization’s National Committee on Governance. She also is a member of the American Psychological Society, Phi Kappa Phi, the S.C. Chapter of the Society for Neuroscience, the S.C. Psychological Association and the S.C. Women in Higher Education.
Gov. Mark Sanford appointed Wages to the Governor’s Advisory Committee to Study the Goals of the Commission on Women. She has been a board member of the Pee Dee Alzheimer’s Coalition, president of the Florence League of Women Voters and on the nominating committee for the S.C. League of Women Voters. She has served on the Florence County United Way Agency Allocations and Review Committee and on the Florence Task Force on Recycling and Waste Management.
She is currently heading up FMU’s Southern Association of Colleges and Schools reaccreditation study.
#49 / 10-22-04